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High orange juice prices may be on the table for a while due to disease and extreme weather

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High orange juice prices may be on the table for a while due to disease and extreme weather
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High orange juice prices may be on the table for a while due to disease and extreme weather

2024-06-14 23:13 Last Updated At:23:20

MOGI GUACU, Brazil (AP) — Orange juice prices have always been volatile, falling when bumper harvests create an oversupply of oranges and rising when frost or a hurricane knocks out fruit trees.

But the record-high prices the world is seeing for OJ right now may be on the table for a while, since the diseases and extreme weather ravaging orange groves in some top-producing countries aren’t easily resolved problems.

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An orange plantation lies in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

MOGI GUACU, Brazil (AP) — Orange juice prices have always been volatile, falling when bumper harvests create an oversupply of oranges and rising when frost or a hurricane knocks out fruit trees.

Workers load a truck with recently harvested oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Workers load a truck with recently harvested oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A spoiled orange hangs on a branch in a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A spoiled orange hangs on a branch in a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Orange farmer Oscar Simonetti examines his fruits, with some affected by citrus greening bacteria, at his plantation in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Orange farmer Oscar Simonetti examines his fruits, with some affected by citrus greening bacteria, at his plantation in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Workers harvest oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Workers harvest oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

This year’s harvest in Brazil, the world’s largest exporter of orange juice, is likely to be the worst in 36 years due to flooding and drought, according to a forecast by Fundecitrus, a citrus growers’ organization in Sao Paulo state.

“The concern isn't just that the price of juice is going up. The concern is not having the juice,” Oscar Simonetti, an orange farmer in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, said.

In the U.S., Florida's already diminished orange production fell 62% in the 2022-2023 season after Hurricane Ian further battered a crop that was struggling due to an invasive pest. Drought also cut Spain’s orange production last year.

Scarce supplies have sent prices soaring. In the U.S., a 12-ounce can of frozen orange juice concentrate cost an average of $4.27 in April, 42% more than during the same month a year earlier, according to government figures.

In the United Kingdom, where the British Fruit Juice Association says supplies are at 50-year lows, the price of fresh orange juice rose 25% over the past year, according to consumer research company Nielsen.

Those price increases are turning off inflation-weary consumers. Orange juice consumption has fallen 15% to 25% in major global markets — including the U.S. and the European Union — over the last year, according to Rabobank, a Dutch bank that focuses on food and agriculture.

Jonna Parker, a principal for fresh food client insights at market research company Circana, said consumers are increasingly getting their morning fruit intake from energy drinks, smoothies and other beverages besides orange juice.

“The price gets high and people consider other alternatives,” she said.

Global orange juice consumption was already declining before the current price hikes due to competition from other drinks and public concern about the amount of sugar in fruit juices. If that trend continues, it should help balance supply with demand and keep prices from rising much further, Rabobank said. But it expects limited supplies will keep prices elevated for some time.

In some markets, orange juice is disappearing from shelves altogether.

Late last year, McDonald’s in Australia removed orange juice from its menu in favor of an “orange fruit drink” that contains 35% orange juice. The company cited short supplies.

Tokyo-based Morinaga Milk Industry Co. expects to stop shipping its Sunkist brand orange juice – which uses juice from Brazil – by the end of June because of low juice supplies from Brazil, a company spokeswoman said. In April 2023, Megmilk Snow Brand Co., based in the northern Japanese city of Sapporo, stopped shipments of 1-liter (about a quart) and 450-milliliter (15.2-ounce) packs of orange juice, which it sells under an agreement with Dole. Sales haven’t yet resumed.

Some companies are considering using alternatives to oranges in their products. Coldpress, a British juice company, introduced a mandarin juice product in February, citing the high price of regular juicing oranges.

But others are tight-lipped about their plans. Several major orange juice makers – including Dole, Tropicana, Florida’s Natural, Uncle Matt’s and Coca-Cola, which makes the Simply and Minute Maid brands – declined to comment or failed to respond to inquires from The Associated Press.

The roots of the current supply troubles stretch back decades. In 2005, an invasive bug called the Asian citrus psyllid arrived in Florida, injecting bacteria from its saliva into the state’s orange trees. The bacteria slowly kills the tree by destroying its root systems. There’s no known cure once a tree is infected.

The impact has been devastating. In 2004, before the disease – called citrus greening – hit Florida, the state produced 200 million boxes of oranges. This year, it will produce less than 20 million.

Michael Rogers, a professor of entomology and the director of the University of Florida’s Citrus Research and Education Center, said no type of orange tree is totally resistant to greening, but scientists have been trying to breed trees that are more tolerant of it.

Citrus greening arrived in Brazil around the same time as Florida, but it has progressed more slowly there because Brazil has much larger orange groves. Bugs spread the disease by flying from tree to tree, Rogers said.

Still, the disease is spreading. Fundecitrus estimates that 38% of Brazil’s orange trees had citrus greening in 2023. Simonetti, the orange farmer, estimates that 20% of his production is affected by greening. Oranges on affected trees don't ripen properly and fall off early, affecting the quality of their juice, he said.

Shifting production to other locations isn’t necessarily an option. California grows oranges, for example, and the citrus psyllid doesn’t fare as well in the state’s climate. But California also doesn’t get the rainfall needed for juicing oranges; its oranges are usually sold for eating, Rogers said.

Another issue impacting orange harvests is extreme weather, which is becoming more common as the world warms due to climate change.

Last year, nine heat waves swept across Brazil, resulting in lower output and poorer fruit quality. This year, the impacts of El Niño have been particularly dramatic, with a historic drought in the Amazon and devastating floods in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul.

“The temperatures are high during the day. At night the temperature drops. The plant can't stand this temperature difference,” Simonetti said.

Brazil’s 2024-2025 harvest is expected to yield 232 million boxes of oranges, down 24% from the prior year.

“We have never seen a harvest like this,” Vinícius Trombin, the coordinator of Fundecitrus’ crop estimates survey, said.

To make up for the anticipated smaller yield, some producers are considering blending oranges with tangerines to make juice, Trombin said. But he’s skeptical.

“The consumer wants an orange juice made up 100% out of oranges,” he said.

Parker, of Circana, isn’t so sure. She thinks blends with other fruits might help hold down costs and revive consumer interest in orange juice.

“The idea of multiple flavors is very popular and is a way to stand out,” she said. “You’ve got to keep people engaged. Once you lose that interest, it’s really hard to get people back.”

Durbin reported from Detroit. AP Writers Yuri Kageyama in Tokyo and Eleonore Hughes in Rio de Janeiro contributed.

An orange plantation lies in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

An orange plantation lies in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Workers load a truck with recently harvested oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Workers load a truck with recently harvested oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A spoiled orange hangs on a branch in a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A spoiled orange hangs on a branch in a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Orange farmer Oscar Simonetti examines his fruits, with some affected by citrus greening bacteria, at his plantation in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Orange farmer Oscar Simonetti examines his fruits, with some affected by citrus greening bacteria, at his plantation in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Workers harvest oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

Workers harvest oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

A worker harvests oranges on a farm in Mogi Guacu, Brazil, Thursday, June 13, 2024. Brazil, the world's largest exporter of orange juice, has been affected by heatwaves, a lack of rainfall and an increase in citrus greening bacteria. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

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The Latest: New details emerge about Trump rally shooting suspect

2024-07-15 10:25 Last Updated At:10:30

A shooting at Donald Trump ’s rally in Butler, Pennsylvania is being investigated as an attempted assassination of the former president and presumptive Republican nominee, law enforcement officials say.

Trump called Sunday for unity and resilience as shocked leaders across the political divide reacted to the shooting.

The Secret Service said it killed the suspected shooter, who attacked from a rooftop of a nearby building outside the rally venue.

Follow the AP’s Election-2024 coverage at: https://apnews.com/hub/election-2024

Here's the Latest:

Tony Perkins, among the most influential Christian conservatives in the Republican Party, was preparing to mount a confrontation with convention planners over his disdain for how debate during the RNC’s platform committee was shut down on Monday, all but eliminating objections to the Trump campaign’s desire to soften language on abortion.

The attempted assassination changed all that, Perkins told The Associated Press after a prayer service in suburban Milwaukee Sunday evening.

“We live in a violent society. And we run the risk of becoming callous to it. And if we become callous to it, we’re going to have more of it,” Perkins said. “I’m hoping and praying it’s a wake-up call in many ways.”

“So, as a result, I’m stepping back from forcing the issue on the platform,” he added. “More divisiveness would not be healthy.”

Perkins called social media “a contagion” for toxic rhetoric passed along by people who do not feel that they’re heard by their government or leaders, and attributed the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol in part to the notion of overheated online rage.

“We need to stop,” he said.

And while thanking God during the service for Trump’s survival, Perkins told more than 100 in the Pewaukee church, “Lord, I believe that our nation is at such a volatile moment that yesterday could have torn this nation right in half.”

The 20-year-old man who tried to assassinate former President Donald Trump first came to law enforcement’s attention at Saturday’s rally when spectators noticed him acting strangely outside the campaign event. The tip sparked a frantic search, but officers were unable to find him before he managed to get on a roof, where he opened fire.

In the wake of the shooting that killed one spectator, investigators are hunting for any clues about what may have drove Thomas Matthew Crooks, of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, to carry out the shocking attack. The FBI said they were investigating it as a potential act of domestic terrorism, but the absence of a clear ideological motive by the man shot dead by Secret Service allowed conspiracy theories to flourish.

The FBI said it believes Crooks, who had bomb-making materials in the car he drove to the rally, acted alone. Investigators have found no threatening comments on social media accounts or ideological positions that could help explain what led him to target Trump.

Crooks graduated from Bethel Park High School in 2022. His senior year, Crooks was among several students given an award for math and science, according to a Tribune-Review story at the time.

He tried out for the school’s rifle team but was turned away because he was a bad shooter, said Frederick Mach, a current captain of the team who was a few years behind Crooks at the school.

Jason Kohler, who said he attended the same high school but did not share any classes with Crooks, said Crooks was bullied at school and sat alone at lunch time. Other students mocked him for the clothes he wore, which included hunting outfits, Kohler said.

Former President Donald Trump told The Washington Examiner that he has rewritten the speech he was set to deliver at the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee on Thursday after being the target of an attempted assassination at his rally Saturday.

“The speech I was going to give on Thursday was going to be a humdinger,” he told the news outlet in an article posted Sunday evening.

In the interview, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee says he will now call for a new effort at national unity, noting that people from different political views have called him.

“This is a chance to bring the whole country, even the whole world, together. The speech will be a lot different, a lot different than it would’ve been two days ago,” he said.

Trump also reflected on the moment a bullet pierced the upper part of his right ear. He said he was saved from death because he turned from the crowd to look at a screen showing off a chart he was referring to.

“That reality is just setting in,” he told the news outlet as he boarded his plane in Bedminster, New Jersey, for Milwaukee. “I rarely look away from the crowd. Had I not done that in that moment, well, we would not be talking today, would we?”

President Joe Biden spoke for about five minutes from the Oval Office and noted that the Republican National Convention was opening in Milwaukee on Monday, while he himself would be traveling the country to campaign for reelection.

He says that during the RNC, he has “no doubt” Republicans will “criticize my record and offer their own vision for this country.” But he promised in campaigning to lay out “our vision.”

The president said passions would run high on both sides and that the stakes of the election were enormous.

But he added, “it’s time to cool it down” and noted not just the weekend attack on Trump but also the possibility of election-year violence on multiple fronts.

He used the address to urge all Americans not to accept an escalation in political violence as normal.

“We debate and disagree, we compare and contrast ... but in America we resolve our differences at the ballot box,” Biden said in his address.

He added: “Politics must never be a literal battlefield. God forbid a killing field.”

President Joe Biden says “we can’t, we must not go down” the road of political violence in American after Saturday’s attempted Trump assassination.

In a prime-time national address, Biden said that political passions can run high but “we must never descend into violence.”

“We can do this,” Biden implored, saying the nation was founded on a democracy that gave reason and balance a chance to prevail over brute force. “American democracy — where arguments are made in good faith. American democracy where the rule of law is respected. Where decency, dignity, fair play aren’t just quaint notions, they’re living, breathing realities.”

The president is planning to deliver extended remarks to the nation in an address from the Oval Office starting at 8 p.m. EDT.

His campaign said the president would touch on “the need for every American to come together” to end political violence in the U.S.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke with former President Trump on Sunday.

“The Prime Minister condemned yesterday’s appalling assassination attempt and reiterated there’s no place for political violence. The Prime Minister wished the former President well and offered condolences to the shooting victims and to the family of Corey Comperatore,” Trudeau’s office said in a statement.

The former president said earlier Sunday that he was going to delay his trip because of the attempted assassination, but then decided he didn’t want it to force a change in his schedule.

Trump is not expected to speak at the Republican National Convention until Thursday night.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson says one of his staff members is no longer employed after he learned of a post she made on social media.

Screenshots of her apparent Facebook post, which was related to the attempted assassination of Trump, circulated on social media after the shooting.

The screenshots showed a post in which the staffer appeared to say she does not condone violence but suggested the shooter should get “shooting lessons” and should not have missed.

The AP was not able to view the user’s private Facebook profile to identify whether the post was still up.

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is asking officials to revisit a prior decision that allows people to bring guns within blocks of the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee after an assassination attempt against former President Donald Trump, a person familiar with the matter told the Associated Press on Sunday.

Evers believes additional steps need to be taken to keep the convention’s attendees, law enforcement and the local community safe, the person said. The person could not discuss details of the request publicly and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.

The request was made to the U.S. Secret Service, which would bring it to the Republican National Committee, the person said.

The Secret Service said at a news conference Sunday that they were confident in their existing security plan and hadn’t made any changes following the shooting.

— Jesse Bedayn and Mike Balsamo

The shooter at the Trump rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, was able to get astonishingly close to the stage where the former president was speaking, according to an AP analysis of more than a dozen photos and videos from the scene, as well as satellite imagery of the site.

Here’s some of the key moments in the timeline of the shooting:

6:02 p.m. EDT

— Trump takes the stage to the strains of “God Bless the U.S.A.” He waves at the cheering crowd and begins his regular rally speech, with spectators both in front of him and behind him on risers.

Around 6:10 p.m.

— After rally-goers notice a man climbing on the top of the roof of a nearby building, a local law enforcement officer climbs to the roof, according to two law enforcement officials.

— A man identified by the FBI as 20-year-old Thomas Matthew Crooks points his rifle at the officer, who retreats down the ladder, the officials said.

— Crooks then quickly fires, according to the officials who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.

— As the first pop rings out, Trump says, “Oh.” He raises his hand to his right ear and looks at it before quickly crouching to the ground behind his lectern.

— Secret Service agents rush to the stage and pile atop the former president to shield him.

— Corey Comperatore, a 50-year-old former fire chief attending the rally, is shot and killed. Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro said Sunday that Comperatore used his body as a shield to protect his wife and daughter.

— Secret Service counter snipers fire back and shoot Crooks.

About 1 minute after the shots

— Video shows Trump getting to his feet and reaching with his right hand toward his face, which was smeared with blood. As Trump stands up, he pumps to the crowd with his right fist.

6:50 p.m.

— Secret Service says “the former president is safe.”

The Secret Service says it is “confident in the security plans” for the Republican National Convention after the attack at the Trump rally in Butler, Pennsylvania.

Additionally, the FBI, the lead intelligence agency for the RNC in Milwaukee, said it has seen no known “specific and articulated threats" against the convention or anyone attending the event.

Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley will speak Tuesday at the Republican National Convention in what will be a highly anticipated speech by former President Donald Trump’s last major challenger in this year’s GOP primary.

Haley, who was also elected twice as South Carolina governor, initially was not among the list of speakers but has since been added to the schedule, according to Haley spokesperson Chaney Denton.

The schedule change was confirmed by a Republican official who is familiar with the convention plans but was not authorized to speak publicly.

— Michelle L. Price and Meg Kinnard

The shooter’s family is cooperating with federal investigators, according to an FBI official.

Relatives of Thomas Matthew Crooks of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, have not returned multiple messages from The Associated Press seeking comment.

Attorney General Merrick Garland told reporters that the Justice Department has “no tolerance for such violence and as Americans we must have no tolerance for it.”

“This must stop,” he said.

FBI Director Christopher Wray says authorities “will leave no stone unturned” in their investigation of the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump.

In a call with reporters Sunday, Wray called the shooting an “attack on democracy and our democratic process.”

“An attempt to assassinate a presidential candidate can only be described as absolutely despicable and will not be tolerated in this country,” Wray said.

The FBI says they believe the AR-style rifle the Trump rally shooter used was legally purchased by the gunman’s father.

Kevin Rojek, special agent in charge of the Pittsburgh Field Office, told reporters that authorities don’t yet know how the shooter gained access to the weapon, and whether he took it without his father’s knowledge.

“These are facts that we'll flesh out as we conduct interviews,” Rojek said. Authorities recovered the weapon at the scene of the shooting.

The FBI says it is investigating the Trump rally shooting as an attempted assassination and also an act of domestic terrorism.

The gunman was not previously on the radar screen of the FBI. He’s believed to have acted alone.

The FBI defines domestic terrorism as acts inside the U.S. that are intended to intimidate or coerce civilians or influence government policy.

The FBI has not yet identified the shooter's ideology, but they are combing through his social media feeds and weapons. So far, they have not found any threatening writing or social media posts.

They said they have located a suspicious device and defused it. They have received more than 2,000 tips.

FBI Deputy Director Paul Abbate says threatening online rhetoric has been “ticking up” since the attempted assassination. He says people are going online to pose as the shooter, who was killed by U.S. Secret Service.

Abbate says they are aware of the increased activity and monitoring it closely.

A crew was power-washing the front of the Buffalo Township Volunteer Fire Company on Sunday with plans to install memorial drapery to honor the slain former chief, Corey Comperatore.

Assistant Chief Ricky Heasley of Sarver, who knew Comperatore for more than a decade, remembers him as very outgoing and full of life.

“He never had a bad word,” Heasley said.

A GoFundMe launched to support Comperatore’s family had already surpassed more than $180,000 in donations as of Sunday.

Biden said he and first lady Jill Biden extend their “deepest condolences” to the family of the man who was killed in the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump.

The president said Corey Comperatore was protecting him family from the bullets that were being fired “and he lost his life.”

“God love him,” Biden said.

Not long before shots rang out, rally goers noticed a man climbing to the top of a roof of a nearby building and warned local law enforcement, according to two law enforcement officials.

One officer climbed to the roof and encountered Crooks, who pointed his rifle at the officer. The officer retreated down the ladder and Crooks quickly took a shot toward former President Donald Trump, and that’s when the U.S. Secret Service counter snipers shot him, said the officials who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.

— Colleen Long

President Biden said he’s directed an independent review of the security at the rally Saturday where a gunman apparently tried to assassinate Donald Trump.

Biden said he has also directed the U.S. Secret Service to review all security measures for the Republican National Convention which begins Monday in Milwaukee.

Biden urged Americans not to make assumptions about the motive of the shooter, who was killed by U.S. Secret Service. He says they’re working swiftly to investigate the incident.

“Unity is the most elusive goal of all,” he added, while urging the public to strive for it.

An NBC News interview between President Joe Biden and anchor Lester Holt on Monday will now occur at the White House, the network said Sunday.

Initially, the interview was scheduled to take place in Austin, Texas, but the White House announced earlier Sunday that Biden’s trip there has been postponed in the wake of the shooting at a rally for former President Donald Trump.

President Joe Biden had planned to speak in Texas on the 60th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act at the Lyndon B. Johnson presidential library, the White House said.

U.S. Rep. Mark E. Green, the chairman of the House homeland security committee, sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Sunday raising questions about the Trump rally shooting and demanding information about the former president’s Secret Service protection.

“The seriousness of this security failure and chilling moment in our nation’s history cannot be understated,” Green wrote in the letter. The chairman said there were serious questions about how the “… shooter was able to access a rooftop within range and direct line of sight of where President Trump was speaking.”

Green also noted reports that the Secret Service had rebuffed requests from the Trump campaign for additional security. A spokesperson for the Secret Service, Anthony Guglielmi, said on social media Sunday that those allegations were “absolutely false” and that they had added resources and technology as the campaign’s travel increased.

The committee is demanding that the department turn over information including documents showing the security plan for Saturday’s event; any information about increases to Trump’s security detail and about how attendees were screened for the Saturday rally; documents outlining the Secret Service’s rules of engagement; and all briefing materials from after the shooting.

The man who was killed at a rally for former President Donald Trump was Corey Comperatore, according to Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro.

Comperatore was a former fire chief from the area who loved his family, Shapiro said.

“Corey died a hero. Corey dove on his family to protect them last night,” the governor said.

Shapiro declined to discuss the conditions of the two others hurt in the shooting.

The governor also ordered flags to be flown at half staff in Comperatore’s honor.

The fund was created by Trump campaign officials the page says it’s “a place for donations to the supporters and families wounded or killed” in Saturday’s apparent assassination attempt.

That’s the message from Rep. Mike Kelly, the Republican congressman who represents the Butler Farm area and who was sitting off to the side behind Trump when the shooting unfolded at a rally in Pennsylvania.

Kelly says he’d brought his wife and grandchildren to the Trump rally at the fairgrounds, the same place where generations of children have shown off their farm animals and baking skills – a beloved spot he himself visited as a child.

“I am in a state of bewilderment of how and what has happened to the United States of America,” Kelly told The Associated Press.

This being Sunday, he encouraged Americans to take a day, go to a house of worship, and think of how each person can make a difference in bringing more civility to political discourse.

To his colleagues and others quickly assigning blame or calling for a congressional investigation, Kelly urged everyone to let law enforcement do its work and not turn the probe into a political one.

“I just wish people -- tone it down,” he said. “Quit trying to find, to blame somebody. The blame lies somewhere in the psyche of America.”

Law enforcement officials tell The Associated Press bomb-making materials were found inside the vehicle of the man suspected in the Trump rally shooting. There were also bomb-making materials found at his home.

The two officials were not authorized to speak publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

— Colleen Long and Mike Balsamo

The range from which 20-year-old Thomas Matthew Crooks fired and his clothing led to early speculation that the shooter had military experience. However, all the branches of the military searched their records Sunday and said in response to a query by The Associated Press that they had no records of him serving.

Records show 20-year-old Thomas Matthew Crooks was registered as a Republican voter in Pennsylvania, but federal campaign finance reports also show he gave $15 to a progressive political action committee on Jan. 20, 2021, the day President Joe Biden was sworn in to office.

Authorities told reporters Crooks wasn’t carrying identification so they were using DNA and other methods to confirm his identity.

A campaign rally site for Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is empty and littered with debris Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

A campaign rally site for Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is empty and littered with debris Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

People take cover as U.S. Secret Service agents surround Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump on stage at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

People take cover as U.S. Secret Service agents surround Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump on stage at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump pumps his fist as he is helped into a vehicle at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump pumps his fist as he is helped into a vehicle at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

A United States Secret Service officer moves barricades outside the Fiserv Forum ahead of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Milwaukee. Former president Donald Trump was whisked off the stage at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania after apparent gunshots rang through the crowd.(AP Photo/Morry Gash)

A United States Secret Service officer moves barricades outside the Fiserv Forum ahead of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Milwaukee. Former president Donald Trump was whisked off the stage at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania after apparent gunshots rang through the crowd.(AP Photo/Morry Gash)

Law enforcement officers gather at campaign rally site for Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is empty Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. Trump's campaign said in a statement that the former president was "fine" after a shooting at his rally in Butler (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Law enforcement officers gather at campaign rally site for Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is empty Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. Trump's campaign said in a statement that the former president was "fine" after a shooting at his rally in Butler (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surrounded by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surrounded by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

U.S. Secret Service agents respond as Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surrounded on stage by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

U.S. Secret Service agents respond as Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surrounded on stage by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump waves from the stage as he is surrounded by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump waves from the stage as he is surrounded by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump pumps his fist as he is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump pumps his fist as he is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

President Joe Biden speaks, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Rehoboth Beach, Del., addressing news that gunshots rang out at Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump's Pennsylvania campaign rally. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

President Joe Biden speaks, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Rehoboth Beach, Del., addressing news that gunshots rang out at Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump's Pennsylvania campaign rally. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

A person watches news in a local bar near the Fiserv Forum watching news ahead of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Milwaukee. Former president Donald Trump was whisked off the stage at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania after apparent gunshots rang through the crowd.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

A person watches news in a local bar near the Fiserv Forum watching news ahead of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Milwaukee. Former president Donald Trump was whisked off the stage at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania after apparent gunshots rang through the crowd.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Preparations are made outside the Fiserv Forum ahead of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Preparations are made outside the Fiserv Forum ahead of the 2024 Republican National Convention, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surrounded by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surrounded by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Police snipers return fire after shots were fired while Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump was speaking at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Police snipers return fire after shots were fired while Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump was speaking at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

People hug after Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump was helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

People hug after Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump was helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is covered by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is covered by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is covered by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is covered by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., on Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surround by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is surround by U.S. Secret Service agents at a campaign rally, Saturday, July 13, 2024, in Butler, Pa. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump is helped off the stage at a campaign event in Butler, Pa., Saturday, July 13, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

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